14 Sep 2011

Two local government bills pass final reading

10:17 pm on 14 September 2011

Two local government bills in the name of the outgoing MP and Local Government Minister Rodney Hide passed their final reading in Parliament on Wednesday.

One of these was the Local Government Borrowing Bill, which will enable local authorities to borrow money at a lower rate through the establishment of a funding agency.

The other bill to pass its final reading authorises the Auckland Council to borrow in foreign currencies, needed because of the super city's size and borrowing requirements.

Another piece of legislation put forward by Mr Hyde that would limit increases in spending by local bodies has been sent to select committee.

The Spending Cap (People's Veto) Bill links annual spending increases to the rate of inflation and population growth, and can be changed only by majority public support expressed in a binding referendum.

The three pieces of legislation took up the bulk of Parliament's debating time on Wednesday.